RACINE — The Downtown Racine Corp. has announced the theme of its 2013 public art project: building blocks.
The art project, which will be on display this summer throughout Downtown Racine, will feature art made out of multiple shaped wooden blocks similar to the blocks most adults played with growing up.
Every artist will receive the same set of blocks and are allowed to use some or all of them to create their finished piece. Sets include 90 wooden pieces made of unfinished maple and include pillars, columns, Roman arches, triangles, Gothic arches, buttresses, and circles. Artists will decorate, paint and create a design using the blocks as the primary component.
Frank Lloyd Wright played with similar block sets called Froebel blocks during his youth which he attested were influential for some of his future architectural designs, according to Devin Sutherland, the DRC’s executive director.
“Wright architectural designs have continued to be a major attraction for tourists in Racine which is the inspiration for the 2013 public art project,” according to the news release announcing the project.
For instance, the SC Johnson Administration Building, 1525 Howe St., and Wingspread, 33 E. 4 Mile Road, were both designed by Wright.
Downtown Racine’s public art project started in 2002, when 150 fiberglass Labradors lined Main and Sixth streets. Since then, the Downtown art project has featured cats, bears, fish and otters, birds and birdbaths, lighthouses, Adirondack chairs, spheres, clocks, trunks and flowerpots.
Artists are now invited to submit proposals for projects. They are due by 5 p.m. March 9. Artist Design Packets can be picked up at the Downtown Racine Corporation office, 425 Main St., or can be downloaded at www.racinedowntown.com/publicart.html.
And even if you are not an artist, you can participate by helping come up with a name for the event. All names must be submitted to the Downtown Racine Corporation by 5 p.m. March 8. Names can be submitted by calling the DRC at (262) 634-6002, emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or sending a letter to the DRC at 425 Main Street, Racine, WI, 53403.
DRC annual awards
At its annual meeting Thursday, Downtown Racine Corp. gave out the following awards:
Downtown Champion Awards — Jim Wardrip and City Development Director Brian O’Connell.
Best New Small Business Award — Tina’s Dress Boutique, 503 Sixth St.
CPR Award — Northterra Real Estate for the Racine County Public Defender’s Office, 420 Sixth St.
Corporate Citizenship Award — Racine County for purchase of Reefpoint Marina.